Monday, July 29, 2013

OMNIPOLLO!

When I attended the RateBeer "Gallery" event in San Francisco that I wrote about a few weeks ago here, one brewer whose ales were present was one wholly unfamiliar to me: OMNIPOLLO. Fact is, they were chosen by the organizers to have their beer sit side by side with many of Beer Samizdat's favorite brewers on the planet, including Russian River Brewing, Prairie Artisanal Ales, The Bruery, Almanac Beer Co., Sante Adairius Rustic Ales and others. So there had to be something there. My complete and utter hatred of hangovers and even personal drunkenness kept me from trying Omnipollo's beers, whatever they were. I had my priorities, and they weren't it.

A few weeks later and I'm in Mountain View's Jane's Beer Store, and the employees there are egging me on about OMNIPOLLO. I brought a bottle of this insane-looking Omnipollo imperial stout with maple syrup of something to the counter, and it got a lot of huzzahs from the staff. They then convinced me to add a bottle of "LEON", a Belgian pale ale, to my shopping bag. I did so, as requested. I learned when I got home that Omnipollo are Swedish, for cryin' out loud. They appear to be a gypsy brewer in the vein of Prairie, Almanac, Mikkeller, Stillwater and other heavyweights. However it gets made, I don't care. I'm all about the final product and its suitability for my refined palate. Thankfully, this "LEON" is suitable and then some – man, is it ever.

"LEON" was made at Belgium's De Proef Brouwerij. I think there's magic in the kettles there, because I love most everything De Proef touches, even when it's not their own – this included. It's a well-carbonated, super yeasty Belgian pale, perfectly split in character between a hoppy American pale ale and a funky Belgian golden. It has tastes of pineapple and a lovely, soapy, effervescent funk. Delicious yeasty tang and a ton of "lacing on the glass". A killer straight up, one I'd have to put up there immediately with the greats….! 10/10.

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